This past Saturday, we were blessed by 23 people who drove in from all over this state with the closest being 40 minutes to an hour and 15 minutes away and the farthest being 4 and 5 hours away to join us for a country style lunch in our home.
It was amazing! Everyone was able to put a pause in their busy schedules to come together for that whole afternoon and early evening for no special occasion, just a random March day, no reason other than wanting to spend time together and all of us finding time to make it happen.
And, that’s the family connection. It’s the pull we feel when we haven’t seen each other in a while, the connection of being in a family with similar roots and the sharing of the good and hard memories together. We each bring something important to the family and the conversations and we each have a seat at the table and we want to be in each other’s lives.
This was one of the best times I have had celebrating life with family. We ate, we drank, we laughed, we talked, we watched the kids play with the toys and on the swing hanging from the big oak tree in the backyard, we held and hugged the babies and each other and we caught up on each other’s lives. We missed the ones that weren’t here as we shared memories of past gatherings. We remembered those past family gatherings when, the now grown nieces and nephews were children and once again noticed how quickly things change.
We sat on the patio soaking in the sun until it got too hot and we had to move indoors. Then my sister had the great idea to take the gathering out to the front where it was cooler and we did. We spent the rest of the day out there talking about life with some of us taking turns running after the kids and the rest of us sitting around the unlit fire pit just off of the front porch. From there we could look into the woods and enjoy the peacefulness or look up to the sky and see the beautiful(and rare) sunny day. At one point the geese flew overhead announcing their presence with the sound of their wings flapping and their voices honking as they went by. My guess is that they too wanted to somehow be a part of our day.
And, then it happened, as all things do, people had to start packing up and heading back to their homes and their lives. Our day together was coming to an end. But, I had made sure to enjoy each moment and to spend time with each person that was able to make it out to our home in the country and for that I was able to feel gratefulness when they had to leave instead of sadness.
This whole scenario reminded me of the children’s book called ‘When The Relatives Came’‘ and although only two stayed the night this time, one of my nephews announced that pretty soon we will have to start calling these gatherings family reunions and I thought to myself that he had just done a bit of foretelling and I was glad that he did as that will help us all remember to cherish each and every time we get together.
And, now the last of the family have pulled out of our driveway heading back to their homes five hours away. I again do not feel the sadness as the family connection is strong and growing stronger everyday, and, for that I am very grateful.
And so, the lesson learned here is to seize the day, seize the moments, and cherish the time we have with each other because when tomorrow comes, those moments and those days become our memories. make them good ones😊☀️😊!